New Britain Rock Cats (54-43, EL Eastern 2nd place - AA Minnesota Twins) – In a two week span the Rock Cats fell from just a half game back to four out after the first place Trenton Thunder (Yankees) rattled off nine wins in eleven games, three of which came against New Britain. The Cats are 7-5 over their last twelve games, having shutout their opponents on three occasions while outscoring them 46-13 in the seven victories. Four of those five loses have been by one run…RHP Daniel Turpen picked up a win for the Eastern Division in last week’s Eastern League All-Star game. Turpen came on in the ninth and pitched to only one batter, Buck Britton, inducing a groundout to second base on the fifth pitch of the at-bat. RHP B.J. Hermsen pitched the sixth inning for the East, allowing two hits and a run as he was credited with a blown save. Catcher Chris Herrmann grounded out and popped out in his two plate appearances…There has been plenty of player movement over the past week involving the Rock Cats. RHP Steve Hirschfeld and OF Evan Bigley were both promoted to Triple-A Rochester. OF Joe Benson was sent down to High Class-A Dunedin while RHP Brett Jacobson was given his outright release from the Twins organization…OF Oswaldo Arcia has 14 hits and 13 RBIs over his last ten games. The Venezuelan native took part in the All-Star Futures Game in Kansas City back on July 8th and went 1-for-2 with a double and an RBI for the World Team.
New Hampshire Fisher Cats (38-61, EL Eastern last place - AA Toronto Blue Jays) – Just as they had lifted themselves out of the basement of the Eastern Division, they came slamming back down with a thud after a 3-12 stretch. The Fisher Cats have suffered losing streaks of five or more games on five occasions this season…Koby Clemens returns to New Hampshire, this time as a catcher, after having spent time in Dunedin and the Gulf Coast League. Clemens batted .148 with New Hampshire in 18 games early in the season. He regained his swing with Dunedin, batting .299 in 23 games, while getting back behind the plate for 16 appearances at catcher, a position he had not been at since 2009…OF Mark Sobolewski leads the team with 17 home runs (third most in the Eastern League), but has not sent one yard since July 7th. In four prior pro seasons, Sobolewski had 23 home runs in 354 games…Former first round selections Chad Jenkins (2009) and Deck McGuire (2010) are a combined 8-19 with a 5.61 ERA and have allowed 30 home runs.
Connecticut Tigers (13-18, NYPL Stedler 3rd place - Short-Season A Detroit Tigers) – After a 3-10 June, the Connecticut Tigers are starting to gather momentum, having won eight of their last ten games. Tigers’ pitching has posted a 1.89 ERA in that ten game span…A July 17th game versus Vermont turned into two as the teams battled into the 18th inning before the Tigers prevailed, 4-3, on a walk-off 2-run homer from Devon Travis. It was the first career home run for Travis who was selected by the Tigers in the 13th round of the 2012 draft…After posting a 8.33 ERA over his first four starts, RHP Endrys Briceno has allowed just one run and five hits in back-to-back winning outings.
Vermont Lake Monsters (16-15, NYPL Stedler 2nd place - Short-Season A Oakland A's) – The Lake Monsters have been standing on some uneven ground of late as they inch closer to the .500 mark due to a recent 2-6 road trip. Although they are still in second place in the Stedler Division, they now find themselves seven games behind first place Tri-City…RHP Logan Chitwood, a 19th round selection in 2010, has been solid in nine appearances out of the pen. Over 20 2/3 innings he has allowed only four earned runs and has struck out 16 batters without allowing a home run. He has also collected three wins for the Lake Monsters...Catcher Bruce Maxwell has gunned down 63% of would-be base stealers this season. In ten game behind the plate he has thrown out ten runners and allowed only six to successfully swipe an extra base.
Worcester Tornadoes (17-41, CanAm League 4th place) – The Tornadoes have clawed their way out of the basement and even in the midst of a seven game losing streak they remain a 1/2 game ahead of the Newark Bears who have also dropped seven straight…OF Brandon Pinckney is second in the Can-Am League with a .346 average. He has hit safely in 17 straight games and 23 of his last 24. Pinckney, a 12th round pick of the Cleveland Indians in 2003, has played for four different MLB organizations in the past…RHP Matt McDonald is 1-1 with three saves in 21 appearances for the Tornadoes. He boasts a 2.29 ERA and is the only Worcester pitcher with five or more inning of work to have an earned run average under 4.00 this season.
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